Can Medical Technicians Be Held Liable for Medical Malpractice?

Medical technician handling multiple unlabeled blood samples

Medical malpractice is often a traumatizing experience—due to physical recovery, emotional pain, and loss of trust in your healthcare provider, the damages can be significant. If you’re hoping to seek compensation for your injuries in addition to managing your physical and emotional recovery, the stress can be intense. This can be particularly difficult when you’re not sure whether you can hold the medical technician responsible for your injuries liable for medical malpractice.

Can I Sue a Medical Technician?

Medical technicians perform essential jobs in the healthcare industry. They can work in a variety of medical workplaces and departments, including laboratories, surgical suites, and hospital rooms. Since they assist doctors and nurses with such a wide number of important tasks, they can occasionally make errors leading to patient injuries. 

However, if a medical technician’s negligence caused you or your family member’s injury, you probably won’t sue them directly. Medical technicians and other support staff in hospitals and doctors’ offices are usually protected by their employers in cases of medical malpractice. Instead, you would bring your lawsuit against the medical technician’s employer. 

Examples of Medical Technician Malpractice

A medical technician’s job responsibilities vary dramatically depending on their specific role within the hospital, doctor’s office, or laboratory. Common examples of medical technician malpractice include: 

  • Mislabeling lab results: Adding the wrong patient’s name or including inaccurate results or information can negatively impact the doctor or nurse’s patient care protocols and overall diagnosis.
  • Improper use of equipment: A medical technician who fails to adequately secure bed rails, leading to a patient falling out of bed and injuring themselves, would be an example of improper use of equipment. 
  • Failure to share information: Forgetting to send results to a doctor can delay important diagnoses and lead to inadequate patient care. 
  • Losing or destroying samples: Losing patient blood or tissue samples or accidentally destroying them can delay diagnosis and treatment, leading to negative outcomes for the patient. 

Basic Requirements for a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit

In order to bring a lawsuit against a medical technician through their employer, you’ll need to establish some baseline qualifications for your case: 

  • A professional relationship: First, you must prove that you had a professional relationship with the facility, meaning you were a registered patient and actively receiving care when the negligence happened. 
  • Medical technician negligence: Next, you’ll have to prove that the medical technician caused a problem through their negligence, such as not providing accurate lab results or losing blood samples. 
  • The negligence led to the injury: Then, you must connect the negligence to your injury or injuries. 
  • The injury caused damages: Finally, show how the injuries caused by the negligence led to specific damages like the loss of your job or your earning abilities, physical pain, mental anguish, or extensive medical bills. 

Special Requirements for a Medical Malpractice Lawsuit

Medical malpractice lawsuits often require additional information and evidence to go to court. Besides proving the medical technician’s negligence and connecting it to your injuries and damages, you may have to: 

  • Consider the timing: Most medical malpractice lawsuits fall under a specific statute of limitations set by your state. Usually, this is within six months to two years of the instance of medical malpractice. After the statute of limitations has passed, you cannot bring a lawsuit to court. 
  • Participate in a medical review panel: Many states first require participation in a medical review panel before proceeding with a court case. The findings from the review panel often serve as evidence in the court case. 
  • Abide by notice requirements: Some states require you to send a formal notice of your intent to sue before proceeding with the lawsuit. 
  • Procure an expert: You’ll more than likely need to secure a medical expert to testify on your behalf and help prove the connections between the malpractice and your injuries and damages. 

Types of Malpractice for Medical Technicians

Medical malpractice can take many forms. For medical technicians, it tends to fall into one of two categories:

  • Diagnosis: Medical technicians don’t make diagnoses, but failing to complete their job duties accurately could lead a doctor to misdiagnose a patient. 
  • Treatment: Similarly, misdiagnosis caused by the errors of a medical technician could lead to improper treatment by a nurse or doctor. 

Who Can Help?

It’s crucial to find a support system to help you navigate the physical, emotional, and financial hardships that sometimes follow an instance of medical malpractice. Find an effective attorney well-versed in medical malpractice to help you successfully seek the compensation you deserve following your injuries. The medical technician malpractice lawyer team at Janet, Janet & Suggs are prepared and ready to help you pursue any compensation you may be owed following malpractice by a medical technician. We’ll focus on the legal work so that you can focus on feeling better. Contact us today for a free case evaluation to see how we can help you seek justice.

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